New York Times praises NZ on nukes

Written By: - Date published: 2:31 pm, September 1st, 2008 - 6 comments
Categories: election 2008, International - Tags:

‘Let’s hear it for New Zealand’ exclaims the New York Times editorial.

Why? Because New Zealand is leading a group of countries that opposes a Bush Administration plan to supply nuclear technology to India. Supply of nuclear technology to India is banned because it used its civilian nuclear programme to develop an atomic bomb, contrary to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. The US needs the 45-member Nuclear Suppliers’ Group to agree to change the rules to make the US-India deal legal. The New Zealand-led group is blocking the deal unless India submits to international monitoring of its nuclear programme and there are guarantees that fissile material won’t be sold to India and that India will be blocked from any future nuclear trade if it tests another nuke.

But this kind of principled leadership isn’t a given. National is a reflexively pro-US party – Simon Power said we should follow the US in any circumstance, Key blustered that we should have helped the US invade Iraq, most National MPs oppose our nuclear ban even if the party has swallowed that dead rat. If National were government, we would almost certainly adopt a pro-US stance, which would mean supprting the nuke deal.

As much as the big policy gaps between National and the Left matter, so do these fundamental differences in worldview that mean they react to emerging issues in radically different ways.

6 comments on “New York Times praises NZ on nukes”

  1. randal 1

    the difference is National is a party of toady lickspittles while Labour has some principles and seeks in its own small way to debate the issues in a democratic manner even when it knows that if push comes to shove we will back our great ally when the chips come down.

  2. Andrew D 2

    It’s pretty disappointing how little coverage this important issue has recieved in the New Zealand media. There’s been quite a lot of comment internationally and Minister Goff’s comments have been widely reported. I have several posts on this at my blog http://addingnoughts.blogspot.com/

    I wouldn’t characterize the Government’s position as opposed to the deal though, (I’m in two minds as to whether this is a good thing). NZ has, for better or worse, accepted the basic premise of the US-Indian nuclear deal–that the Indian civilian nuclear industry can get uranium without India signing either the nuclear nonproliferation or comprehensive test ban treaties. We are only holding out for extra safeguards that are also being sought by the US congress. At least one Indian news source suggests that perhaps the new draft agreement before the NSG this week has moved enough to satisfy us.

    On the question of National’s foreign policy, it would certainly be great to know what they think about this and other issues!

  3. Fear fear fear again, heck people should use stats and hard data, this is a viable energy option, but of course the left will just try the fear tactics.

  4. CarlF 4

    Brett’s “viable energy option” contribution provides no “hard data” on environmentally acceptable disposal of atomic waste.

  5. Matthew Pilott 5

    CarlF, Not to mention that this is nothing to do with New Zealand’s potential use of domestic nuclear power plants, but about opposing the unregulated transfer of nuclear technology to a country that has created and tested neclear weapons, and not signed up to the NPT.

    But don’t let facts get in the way of a rant about people not using facts, Brett.

  6. Pascal's bookie 6

    MP, but but but, India opposes Pakistan who is our ally (occasionally) in the war aginst a tactic, so that’s bad, but they are mostly not teh Muslim so that’s good.

    They need the bomb to deter the Islamofascist threat from Pakistan, our ally against the islamoterrorists.

    Everyone knows that having the bomb deters terrorism, which is why Iran must not be allowed to do those things that the NPT says they are allowed to do.

    We must undercut the NPT in order to strengthen it.

    People that don’t see the sense in this are just mongerers of fear.

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